ISLAMABAD: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has given three weeks time to the government to complete prerequisite actions to qualify for the disbursement of next tranche.
Finance Minister Senator Muhammad Ishaq Dar is set to hold consultations with his economic team for evolving a strategy to work on the required actions to be taken in the coming few weeks.
If the government fulfills the all the prior actions, IMF will disburse the next tranche of about one billion dollars.
A senior official said, “now the ball is in the court of Islamabad as the IMF has asked the government to take actions on account of fixing cash-bleeding energy sector including power and gas, taking additional taxation measures and pursuing structural reforms in the remaining period of the Fund programme,” Geo News reported today.
Meanwhile, the government’s team and IMF officials held another round of virtual talks on Friday. During this online meeting, Finance Minister assured the IMF officials that Pakistan was expecting to receive dollars’ inflows from a friendly country by end Dec or early Jan 2023.
It will stabilise the foreign exchange reserves of the State Bank of Pakistan which have dropped to $6.1 billion last week _ the lowest level since 2014.
According to official sources, the government is not in favour of the imposition of power surcharge ranging upo to Rs 12.69 per unit hike which will increase cost of unit above Rs31 a unit.
They said the government could also improve efficiency and governance to reduce reliance on subsidies and reduce energy losses.
For this purpose, the Ministry of Energy has agreed to devise a revised road-map for the CDMP for 2022-23 that will be acceptable to the government and the IMF.
Also, it was learnt that the IMF has allow an adjuster of Rs340 billion _ increase in the budget deficit because of flood-related expenditures in 2022-23.
The IMF, however, has directed the government to bridge the yawning gap for materializing the FBR’s envisaged target as IMF believe that the FBR would not be able to achieve the revenue target of Rs7.47 trillion for 2022-23.